Sharks are Misunderstood

Sharks are awesome creatures and are often misunderstood. 

I also feel misunderstood, so I got a shark tattoo on my arm.  However, that is not the point of this blog post, so let get back on track.

Here are some interesting facts about sharks.

  1. Sharks don’t have bones, instead they have cartilage.  That is what makes a shark a shark, it’s not about size, shape, or eating preferences.
  2. Sharks have electroreceptor organs and can sense electromagnetic fields.
  3. Shark skin is made of dermal denticles, which is so rough it could be used as sandpaper.
  4. The whale shark can grow up to 40 feet long, but lives on a diet of plankton.
  5. Bull sharks can live in salt and fresh water.
  6. The dwarf lantern shark is about the size of a goldfish.


Shark Attacks of 1916


This book is about a series of shark attacks that occurred around New Jersey in 1916.  It covers the events by looking at multiple aspects of what happened and what might have caused a rouge shark to behave in such a manner.

The author gives a brief and easy to understand description of the evolution and biology of sharks.  It looks at what makes the shark unique and its place as an apex predator in the ecosystem. 

The author also explains what was happening in history during the early 1900s and the societal norms of the time.  This was a time of change and more people were entering the ocean for leisure than had ever done before in American history.

One of the most gripping parts of the book was how the author delved into the personal lives of each of the victims.  He talked about their family history, their work or school career, and the long term effects each attack had surviving family members.

This was an interesting and educational book to read.  I found it riveting and would highly recommend it.


Shark Trouble by Peter Benchley


After writing Jaws, Peter Benchley became an advocate for sharks.  He has written non-fiction books and worked with several documentaries to teach people more about these fascinating creatures.  Peter Benchley wants to help people see sharks as complex beings that have an essential role in the ecosystem.

Peter Benchley’s book Shark Trouble starts with a brief overview of sharks and their importance as apex predators.  Next, he looks at how sharks are typically demonized in the media.  The final section of the book list other creatures in the ocean that can be dangerous, such as:  moray eels, killer whales, barracudas, rays, and squids.

The book is interesting and easy to read.

Sharks are Misunderstood

I think sharks are misunderstood.  They are not mindless killing machines, they are actually very fascinating creatures.

  • The smallest species of shark is the Pale Catshark, and it only grows to eight inches in length.
  • The largest species of shark is the Whale shark, which can grow to 75 feet long.
  • The skeleton of a shark is not made of bone, instead it is make of cartilage.
  • Sharks are saltwater fish; however, the Bull Shark is capable of living in freshwater and saltwater.
  • The sharks skin is so rough that it has been used as sandpaper.
  • Sharks have small holes around their head that can detect electrical fields in the water.  This allows the shark to locate prey, even if they cannot see it.  It also explains why sharks have been known to attack metal objects, which give off a weak electrical field.

The more I learn about sharks, the more impressed I become.  They truly are fascinating creatures.